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Abner | Hill Farmstead Brewery

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BA SCORE
100
world-class
375 Reviews
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BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Hill Farmstead Brewery
Vermont, United States
hillfarmstead.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Abner (1867-1953) is our great grandfather; Hill Farmstead Brewery rests upon the land that was once home to him and his fourteen children. In his honor, this Double IPA is dutifully crafted from American malted barley, a plethora of American hops, our ale yeast and water from Abner’s well. It is unfiltered, naturally carbonated, and double dry hopped. Aromatic and flowery, bursting with notes of citrus and pine, this is the ale that I dream to have shared with Abner.

170 Theoretical IBU

Pale and Caramel Malt; Dextrose; Centennial, Chinook, Columbus, Simcoe, and Warrior hops; Ale Yeast, and our Well Water.

Added by kingcrowing on 05-12-2010

BEER STATS
Reviews:
375
Ratings:
2,515
Avg:
4.58
pDev:
19.65%
 
 
Wants:
1,969
Gots:
305
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 375 | Ratings: 2,515
Photo of ehammond1
4.54/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler

Thanks for pouring me this, HopHead84!

Slightly hazed, glowing apricot/orange color with a moderately sized off-white head that leaves great stick all the way down the glass.

The aroma is terrific and I knew this was a very special DIPA on first whiff. The aroma is a combination of pungent citrus flesh, tropical fruit, and floral notes. The combination is lovely.

The flavor too is wonderful. The tropical fruit, citrus notes, and floral elements combine together magnificently well. The bitterness is only moderate, which makes this beer remarkably drinkable.

Medium bodied with moderate to lower carbonation. Amazingly drinkable.

World-class.

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Photo of JamesStreet
4.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured on tap at Armsby Abbey in Worcester, Mass
A- pour is hazy, yellow color with ridiculously tight-packed bubbles. Wow!
S- I got citrus in the realm of grapefruit, apricot, tangerine.
T- really. Hits you with bitter citrus like orange peel, lemon rind, danky bitterness. Superb!
M- rich and creamy medium-bodied. Soooo good. Finishes nicely, not really dry at all.
O- this is truly a world-class IPA.

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Photo of koopa
4.32/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

UPDATE: 10.11.13

This beer is fantastic :)

ORIGINAL REVIEW: 4.11

Growler received in a trade with the ever generous MtGoat thanks!

Appearance: Pours a hazy goldfish orange with honey folds and a 1 finger white crown that shows little retention or lace.

Smell: A touch of sweet malt over floral hops and citrus hops. I but more subdued than I was expecting considering how blown away I was by Edward IPA.

Taste: Grassy and herbal introduction with moderate bitterness, followed by a touch of malt sweetness, and ending with a decently bitter finish. There really isn't much citrus hop presence...just a touch of grapefruit and a dash of tangelo orange presence.

Mouthfeel: A bit undercarbonated but this growler was filled about 10 days ago so that might have played a role.

Drinkability: No real problem getting this one down.

I think this one is worth another sample (mainly to see if the age of my growler played a part in my tasting experience) but I'm not even close to liking this as much as the Edward IPA.

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Photo of harrymel
3.44/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml growler to the face.

Pours a hazy peach honey with some soapy top suds. Smells of peaches, mangoes, some resin and some biscuit malts. Not that impressed on the nose. Flavor is malt, more peach, some pear, grapefruit, lemon, resin and more crackery malts. A little sweet, but some bitterness in there too. Medium bodied with moderate carb and an off dry finish. Although decent, not overly impressed with this one either. Of the imperial IPAs I've had from Shaun, I've yet to really feel like he has done much for me, a little too sweet in 2 out of three (best so far was S&S4). The pale ales have been tits though.

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Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.7/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to whoever shared this one at Churchill's Finest release

Look: Pours a orangish yellow color with more orange than yellow. With a 1/4 white head and good retention and some spotty lace

Smell: Very bright tropical fruit nose lots of grapefruit and pineapple and some citrus in the background

Taste: Like the nose the beer is full of tropical fruits which reminds me of Kern Citra. Lots of mango pineapple and grapefruit.

Mouthfeel: Medium body medium carbonation and just a touch dry

Overall: I would say this is in my top 3 favorite DIPA's I would say this is slightly behind Kern Citra and Heady Topper. Great beers

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Armsby Abbey. Served out of a Hill Farmstead snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Served with a 1 finger fluffy white head with very good retention. Beer is cloudy, dull yellow. Stringy lace that really sticks around. Clarity hurts a bit but this is still a great looking beer.

Nose is citrus, pine, tree sap, papaya. Very pulpy and aromatic. Real dank hoppiness resides in this one. Par for the course for Hill Farmstead beers... that is, amazing!

Bitter pine, tropical fruit, dank hop bitterness and pulp. Nice malt body lingers in the back with a sappy finish. Pine hop bitter aftertaste. Great complexity and balance here.

Light to medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation. Prickly in the mouth and smooth and quenching going down. Messy finish with a lingering aftertaste. Can't believe this is 8.2%. Drinks like its 5% or lower.

Shaun Hill may be the king of hoppy beers and he proves it yet again with this creation. An amazing beer worth moving high and hell water to try!

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Photo of DaveHack
4.85/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this at Teresas, same night as the Sour Event.

Pours a cloudy orange, with a nice fluffy white head.

Smell isn't as strong as I expected. Definate citrus smell, fresh n fruity.

This beer shines in the mouth. Tastes like fresh, bitter hops. Awesome bitterness on the swallow.

Feels so good in the mouth. Creamy and on the thicker side. Nice fresh, oily hop presence. Fucking Awesome!

I love this beer, definately get it, try it, if you can!

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Photo of Chaney
4.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap at The Reservoir in Waterbury. Even though I'm not a huge fan of Shaun Hill's arrogance, I have to admit this brew is pretty legit.

A: Poured a very cloudy, golden color, with a slight, 1/2 finger head.

S: Floral in spades, with that certain "Dreadnaught-esque" candy-coated alcohol that is absolutely to die for.

T: Very Dreadnaught-esque in its IPA disposition: Fresh Orange juice, grapefruit, and some caramel and butterscotch thrown into the mix.

M: Hell, what do I know here. I guess I'll add that it's lowly carbonated, non-sugary, and damn-near perfect here.

O: This lives up to its hype, for sure.

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Photo of Rollzroyce21
5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Cheers to iLOVEbeer for the extra!
#1
- Tasted and noted on 12-Jul-13.

Poured from a howler that was filled 14 days ago and it traveled cross country in summer days. Not the ideal condition probably, but seeing as how I'm in SoCal, I'm not complaining.

Aromas are kind of faint but get the typical pine and tropical and citrus fruits. Smells as if it's going to be dry. Bit of zest and earthy-ness. In the taste, it starts off with pine and earthy-ness. Then a sweet, caramely, nectary juice. Dank pine hops all throughout. Definitely in a good way. It's got a low malt body and got a crisp dryness in the finish. Almost got a saison-quality to it.

170 theoretical IBU?? Tastes like half that. 8.2 abv? Could pass as a single IPA. Fantastic DIPA. Very dangerously drinkable. I can only assume fresh from tap would make this unworldly.

#2
- 2014 vintage
- Off tap @ Beachwood (LBC) on 7-Nov-14
- 10 oz. pour into a wheat beer glass

Tasted against Double Citra, Legitmacy, and Nelson Single Hop. Of the four, I ranked this one 1st. In fact, this is one of the best IPA's I've ever had. I will now often wonder when I'll get to have this off tap again...

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler filled 2 days ago after a visit to the brewery.

The beer pours an effervescent, hazy yellow-orange with an inch of a dense, creamy looking white head. A vigorous swirl regenerates the head and washes away the lacing. The nose has a subtle hoppiness that's slightly floral and citrusy followed by a modest sweetness. The taste manages to pack in even more flavor that reminds me of a cleaner, more drinkable heady topper (...which seems insane to say). The beer has an absolute perfect balance between hop fruitiness, bitterness, and sweetness from the malt and added sugars. The aftertaste is slightly citrusy and bitter and finishes semi-dry as a gush of carbonation carries the beer down into the depths of my innards. This beer is certainly world class and worth trying...but I can't see it being bottled for the masses.

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Photo of thebigredone
4.11/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Steve for hooking me up with a 2L growler of this.

I'll skip to the review of taste, as the others all take care of aroma and appearance.

Taste - A little different than I was expecting based on the description and other reviews. To me, this beer had some citrus aspects, such as bitter grapefruit peel, but the flavor was mostly dominated by the pine. Not my favorite flavor profile.

Overall - This is a very solid DIPA, and I enjoyed it. However, I enjoyed a number of the other HF hoppy beers I've tried much more. It surprises me greatly that this is the highest rated of the bunch. Glad to have tried it, but certainly not one I would seek out again.

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Photo of Roguer
4.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful beer: 1 finger Snow White head with good retention and tons of lacing; opaque, pulpy light orange and yellow brew.

Full, classic DIPA aromas. Light biscuit, slight tropical fruit, lots of citrus, a hint of pepper.

Delicious! Tons of juice: mango, lemon, creamy pale malts, biscuit, and slight pepper. Far more tropical fruit than citrus. Some citrus peel and pine resin on the backend.

Creamy, relaxed mouthfeel. Soft yet lively.

Another delicious hoppy beer from HF.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 1.5L swingtop growler (less than 5 day old) into a tulip glass. Huge thanks to a fellow BeerAdvocate for going to the HF release party to pick up a growler for me. Pours hazy gold with a thin white head that lasts very nicely throughout. Wow! The aroma reminds me of the Ephraim, I pick up some mango, tangerine, pineapple, and some grass. The flavor sure reminds me of the Ephraim as the aroma clearly suggested at the beginning. Sweet pines, some lemon, mango, and pineapple are detected across the tongue as well. Thin and smooth mouthfeel with excellent carbonation. This is a very dangerously drinkable DIPA from Hill Farmstead. Glad to have tried this one out!

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Photo of jvillefan
4.61/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: A hazy yellow body with a thick pure white head.

S: Amazing. There is a huge citrus burst in the front end of the aroma. There is a nice mellow caramel/biscuit aroma lingering in the background.

T: A very well balanced IPA despite the 170 IBUs. There is huge citrus, pine, and grassy flavors mixed in the the caramel grains. Well balanced.

M: Thick and buttery body with great carbonation.

O: Amazing beer. Well worth the wait and hunt for this beer.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
4.4/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Tasting notes from November 11th, 2015
Had on-tap@ Prohibition Pig in Waterbury, VT

Appearance - Hazy and golden orange in color with a foamy, half-finger width head. Great retention, eventually breaking down to a thin, consistent layer of suds across the surface. Remember that movie and/or show Alien Nation? How those aliens had crazy, intricate markings on their heads? That's how I'd describe the lacing on this puppy.

Smell - The aroma hits on notes of orange, grapefruit, pine and a bit of leafy/minty character.

Taste - Oh wow. Strong orange and a bit of grapefruit pith. Lesser notes of mango and a touch of banana peel. Some leafiness and a light, minty character is found along with moderate citrus pith in the finish.

Mouthfeel - On the lighter end of full-bodied with moderate carbonation. For as big as this is, it goes down incredibly smooth and easy.

Overall - I love unique brews, and I've never had a DIPA quite like this. It's kind of the Anti-Pliny. Whereas Pliny exhibits crisp, clean precision, this baby makes it's mark by incorporating complexity from all over, but delivers an incredibly well-layered, harmonious flavor profile. Simply lovely.

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Photo of SkiBum22
4.64/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Growler of Abner, consumed within 2 weeks.
Hill Farmstead glassware

A - Abner pours a bright peach-orange hue with a one finger head of white foam that quickly dissipates. Lacing abounds. Like all of Hill Farmstead's beers, this one is unfiltered and opaque.

S - A very nice, tropical, citrus nose, with some papaya, pineapple, and a little bit of peach, nectarine aroma. Very floral.

T - Hop bitterness, Citrus fruits and floral all in perfect balance. Pick up the tropical fruits as well.

M - Maybe the best mouthfeel out of all the great DIPA's I've ever had. Smooth, creamy, balanced. Leaves your mouth watering which most powerful DIPA's don't. You're usually left with a puckering and dry palate but not here.

O - Heady Topper to me is the greatest IPA of all-time, but this one is right behind and it and in the same ballpark. The hop character even reminds me of Heady. I don't know how Shaun keeps pumping out world class IPA's but he does. If your a fan of IPA's this is a must try. Craftsmanship at it's best.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.75/5  rDev +3.7%

A very hazy orange with a glow at the center like the sun. White foam rose and fell quickly.

Enormous citrus aroma, heavy with oranges. Assertive and inviting.

Firm semi-sweet malt foundation. Explosion of fruit. Bitterness bursts at the swallow, and drags the fruit with it through the afterglow.

Nice prickly mouthfeel.

An outstanding IPA that lives up to the brewery's reputation.

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Photo of Mikeypnh
4.87/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Growler is a week old. Just got returned to me from a damaged package. Didn't want to send it again as a two week old growler. Looks like the shipping hasn't affected it. Pours a murky yellow/orange. Small head but great lacing left on the glass. The smell isn't overwhelming but it's very pleasant. Citrus is dominant. The taste is very well balanced. The citrus and grass/pine mesh well and nothing specific stands out. There is a nice slight bitterness, and it's not too sweet. Carbonation has held well. Mouthfeel is creamy, medium bodied, and spot on, like most HF ipas. This has to be my favorite HF beer, if not my favorite of all time. It's so easy to drink with so much flavor. Abv is hidden very well.

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Photo of oglmcdgl
4.92/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at capones.

A- comes to me with a nice finger or so of bright white head that settles after a few to leave a nice smattering of lace around the glass and just the faintest of rings. Hazy sunset orange yellow in color with a glow that makes ya feel warm inside.

S- wow wow we wow. This smells amazing. Mash a mango in your face then take a bite out of a tangerine, that's what were working with here. A touch of the super dank doobs for a second then a smooth roll into a floral honey like sweetness.

T- loads of citrus and tropical fruits with mango, oranges, pineapple, finishing out with a good bite of grapefruit rind. Just about the fruitiest dipa I've had. Light touches of cut grass and a bit of a floral twist. Malts do just enough to keep things in check but never put a dent in the fruit. Dry biscuits and a bit o honey.

M- just about perfectly mid level in the body department, like the perfect lady, just enough to hold on to but nothing more then you need. Carb is great with the bubbles hitting all the right spots but never going to far and blowing the body out of the water.

D- that's a god damn good beer. I'd go to say its up there with the best and I've had the best. Baller as hell and so fucking drinkable. I'm in awe of this beer.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.95/5  rDev +8.1%

Poured from a 750 mL growler at the Toppling Goliath taproom at the King Sue release. Really clean and bright yellow body. Huge green nose with spruce tips, grapefruit rind, and almost a dankness/ditchweed character. The beer has just enough sweetness and drinks like liquid hops. Minimal bitterness cold, while there's a bitter kick at the end as it gets closer to room temperature. Absolutely world class. The body is so clean, and the mouthfeel is so smooth. Nicely carb so it doesn't come across as sticky.

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Photo of Arbitrator
5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Chilled 750mL growler into a glass. Thanks, Ben! Consumed on a beach in Kaua'i.

A: Pours an unfiltered copper body that glows a burnt orange against the setting sun. I normally love clear IPAs, and I mark down the unfiltered ones for a reason. But, for reasons that will become clear as you read on, I had to make an exception here.

S: Peaches, mango, pineapple -- this is a tropical citrus smorgasbord. Having eaten nonstop tropical fruit since I arrived on this island, this beer is a liquid reminder of the excellence of my surroundings. It has a restrained pale malt nose that imparts only the lightest sweetness.

T: Tropical citrus: mango, peach, pineapple, and the rind of orange and lemon and grapefruit. The "rind" is mentioned because there is a mild bitterness found here; it is sticky and lingering, but not overpowering or palate-wrecking. The pale malt imparts enough sweetness to give the beer heft without making it seem thin and insubstantial. This is the oxymoronic "balance" that people speak of in DIPAs.

M: Great hoppy flavor with modest bitterness, yet a clean finish. I find myself struggling to find a flaw here. There is none. The beer hides it ABV smoothly, it carries no extra sweetness, and it doesn't ruin the palate with excessive bitterness. This is clean to a fault.

O: I would be inclined to say I'm being generous toward this beer given the particular setting, but I also consumed a growler of HF Citra IPA, from the same box, prior to this trip, in my drab apartment. I found that one amazing, as well. I review harshly, but there's simply nothing to criticize here. This is an affordable, exceptionally well-crafted beer. It is hard to acquire in trade for a reason. I'm sorry to contribute to the hype, but this is world-class. I hope I get to drink a 2L of this in the future.

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Photo of portia99
4.92/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml growler (filled 9/8/12) courtesy of jlindros. Taking for making the trek up there and grabbing this for me! Poured into a Harpoon 100 Barrel series stemmed glass.

A - Pours a very well hazed pale golden color - thick and fruit juicy looking. Three fingers of fluffy white head rises off the surface with a semi-aggressive pour into the middle of the glass. Beautiful looking DIPA!

S - From over a foot away from the glass, all I can smell is hops. Super fresh smelling, freshly peeled and cut grapefruit, mildly sweet, a touch of sweatiness, extremely faint (but definitely there) grainy and sugary malt base. Outstanding!

T - Thick citrusy and tropical up front...tons of fresh grapefruit, lots of pineapple, hints of pine/resiny and a little bit of apricots. Sharply bitter...gives a lasting impression on the tongue - the hints of sugary malt try to tame it a bit, thankfully without much success...but just enough to sooth it out a touch. I've had one of the first pints of Pliny off a fresh bright tank at the RR pub...even that didn't taste as fresh or hop forward as this. Again, outstanding!

M - A bit on thin side...definitely not watery but lacking a bit in body. Carbonation is smooth, just a touch tingly and just shy of medium. Well attenuated fermentation that leaves the beer fairly dry overall leaving only traces of sweetness behind. Mouth filling bitterness and a tropical fruity/citrusy explosion. Really good.

O - Overall, this has to be in my top 5 best DIPA's - right there with PtY, Double Sunshine, Heady Topper for me. Really great...I've had this on tap before and remember it being a really great beer, but I had forgotten how great...fresh growler from the source makes this really amazing. Definitely get this if you can and drink it fresh.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
4.52/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml growler courtesy of Camden. I can tell you that you've helped make an incredibly trying time a bit more bearable. Thank you.

Foggy medium orange with a thin egg white cover and some pleasant stick.

Smells of creamy peachy mango surprise. A white pepperyness lingers as well.

Taste follows suit with a big bright citric presence and a dank herbal middle that finishes with a dry cutting bitterness. Fruits pop lively along the palate. Papaya comes to mind as well. Slightly oily, the hops glide along the entire sip, tap dancing all over my tasting places.

Mouthfeel is like pureed fruit smoothie; this just slides along the tongue.

An interesting beer: for the first half of the bottle I wasn't all that impressed and didn't feel there was much cohesion. Towards the second half, however, the fruit smoothie aspects really began to present themselves. The presentation of these growlers makes the experience somehow feel unique and enjoyable.

As always, thanks for the opportunity to drink a want and for allowing me the chance to try this.

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Photo of tylerstravis
4.46/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

What is this wizardry?! This is one of the most interesting IIPA's I've had. While it is not my favorite, the experience of this beer is singular and well worth the legwork to get it. This is way more than a tick on the top 250, this is something special.

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Photo of Damian
4.69/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a 750 ml swing top growler purchased at the Hill Farmstead Brewery, Greensboro, VT
Served in a Hill Farmstead Brewery stemmed glass

The beer poured a cloudy, glowing peachy-amber color with a soapy looking, bright white head that quickly dissipated. Small droplets and thin streaks of spotty lacing trickled along the glass.

The nose was simply mesmerizing. Super hoppy with loads of sweet, smooth fruitiness. Peaches and apricots came through strongest. Lots of juicy tangerine, mango, papaya and passionfruit as well. I have never before experienced such a cornucopia of exotic fruit notes in a beer's aroma.

Strong, fruity hop flavors carried through into the taste as well. Sweet tangerines dominated. Peach and apricot notes were quite prevalent as well. Although I would assume that this beer benefited from a moderate dosage of caramel malts, its pleasant sweetness seemed to have emerged from the diverse hop profile rather than from residual malt sugars. The beer finished quite pithy and dry with a moderate, grapefruit rind-like bitterness. At 8.2% ABV, this beer masked its alcohol prowess quite well.

The mouthfeel may have been the only letdown with this beer. The body was a bit light for the style. A very fine and mild effervescence helped the liquid glide across my tongue. Somewhat creamy, fluffy and smooth.

In their short existance, the Hill Farmstead Brewery has seemed to master the art of creating hoppy beers, and this example is proof of that. Outstanding work. I cannot wait to see what comes next.

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Abner from Hill Farmstead Brewery
4.58 out of 5 based on 2,515 ratings.
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